46 thoughts on “Why I Love Foursquare”

  1. Om:

    Foursquare probably is big fun, but its notifications that are auto-dispatched to Twitter are not. They’re incredibly irritating to non-users of Foursquare. Fortunately, it looks like you (and other thoughtful users) have the good sense to leave those turned off (or turn them off if – horrors! – they are on by default).

    1. Dwight

      Great points. I think the point of those notifications is that people might have smaller social sets that say me and as a result, it might be okay to tweet them out.

      Anyway I keep them turned off — though sometimes I tweet out my “mayorship” of a place. Just for fun 🙂

      That said, what you are suggesting are feature improvements and that I am sure, guys at the company would roll out soon enough.

      1. I think Twitter should implement some sort of ignore functions for certain Twitter apps. I really don’t mind the FourSquare updates, but those who do could just block all incoming tweets from that particular app. Just an idea.

  2. Om:
    I want to start off by saying I love Foursquare. I’ve been using since it launched at SXSW earlier this year and I must say that I’m the mayor of a few strategic locations that I will not be giving up soon. But some are obsessed and will do anything to stay on top of the numbers game (ie. cheating or changing the name of the establishment slightly to get a new check in). I just wonder how this will compromise the collection of data for paying customers in the future. Just a thought.

    1. Agreed Derek.

      I hate it when people will do anything to stay on top of the numbers game: that is like any other game — some (a handful) will cheat and try and route around the rules but generally it is going to be a pretty clean data set.

      They need to build filtering in the system where the audience can help them correct these issues as and when they arise.

  3. Thanks for this insight! I’ve been using is lightly for a while now (since Fred Wilson mentioned it) good to hear your take on it’s future!

  4. I’m with Dwight. I will actively stay away from Foursquare precisely because my Twitter is choked with Foursquare updates that feel very… spammy. I can’t stand it.

  5. I love foursquare too, and not just because they have an Android app!

    Trivia: Foursquare is using Yahoo’s design principal called “Collectible Achievements”, which was open sourced long ago ( pre-Microsoft acquisition )


    Would love to see more apps built on this principal, fun for user lucrative for demographics/metrics ( ala recent Brightkite rebuild of location aware advertising ).

    1. Todd

      I had not known about this design principle, so thank you for letting me know. I am going to dig into this and see what I learn as well.

  6. That’s quite an endorsement of Foursquare. I use it too and am quickly becoming addicted to it.

    I recently tried to check-in from Okayama, Japan and had to pretend I was in SF; happy to hear additional cities coming online quickly.

    And your Sightglass example is the best use of the service I can see as actionable at this point. And – I also found myself hanging out at Web 2.0 because of an OM Foursquare check-in last month.

    I look forward to seeing some of the endless possibilities of this service

  7. I remember interviewing for a sales role in 1996 for CitySearch which included visiting local shops/restaurants and essentially selling them on CitySearch profiles. Its fun just thinking about how those sales calls went 🙂 That model didn’t work well for many now obvious reasons.

    It will be interesting to watch how FourSquare tackles platform monetization. In 2010, there are a lot of options — and a self serve play could really print $$ out of the elusive local advertising market.

  8. Other useful uses for 4SQ:
    I’ve discovered Foursquare is handy for finding the venues I’m looking for. I’m driving in San Francisco going, “I know Slim’s is around here somewhere….” I just check in with Foursquare then I look at the list of venues till I find Slim’s address.

    Also works, when I’m visiting a new place, to answer the question “Where is there a Peet’s Coffee around here?”

    1. Andrea

      Thanks for sharing that use case scenario. It was something that I have done so often but had never thought about it the way you described. A location-based venue finder — add one more role for the service. 🙂

  9. Not that many people using it in Stockholm as of yet, but I still like Foursquare a lot. For the record, I also started out as a sceptic, but now I’ve realized the endless possibilities and areas of use where software like this (and data) can become useful.

    Also, the game element of it is more enticing that you might initially think.

    Lastly, I love how it bridges the gap between the social media sphere and interactions with offline service providers, such as bars and coffee shops. Cool to see that there already companies out there that leverage Foursquare as a means for a loyalty program.


  10. Hello Om,

    Love the new site!

    FourSquare certainly resonates with an niche user but the same thing that makes it resonate with this group makes it very difficult for it to gain widespread adoption. If the flat-lining in growth is true it may be indicative of this it is unlikely that Foursquare will come back and achieve the hockey stick adoption curve. My gut tells me that the novelty will ware off.

    Many before me have mentioned how Foursquare updates are invasive and I agree, I went and turned them off, I also never find myself checking in. Part of the reason is that foursquare doesn’t work in my town. It is one of those things, you love it if you’re peers are using it but once the group starts to lose interest it will fall into disuse among that group, simply because recognition is the impetus to use it. If Foursquare wants to succeed they need to provide real value to improve individuals lives. The game may interest users, but real life value to individuals regardless of who else is there will keep them.

  11. Foursquare is a neat service but these so-called “data-sets” are a bunch of nonsense. Here’s why: advertisers want to buy things which are basically “dumbed-down”.

    Remember the Social Graph? How many posts did you do about its significance? I bet I know the answer to that question.

    Facebook doesn’t talk about the Graph anymore. Wonder why? They probably don’t want to embarrass themselves because they too know that it’s nonsense.

  12. Hi,
    Four square has used simple technique to make life easier. It is really amazing that one can locate his or her friends in a restaurant or theater.
    Thanks for posting a good application.

  13. They’re definitely onto a good thing. Not sure if Foursquare will be the end game in this space but they’ll be key players for sure.

    Wrote some thoughts about the experience from Sydney, Australia at my blog (click my name above). Enjoy.


  14. Dennis Crowley and his gang presented FourSquare at the New York Tech MeetUp many many months back. I was not that impressed. Actually the app felt cheesy to me. But now I can see why it is being touted as the next Twitter. I met Crowley at a recent New York Tech MeetUp and told him about my initial reaction and congratulated him on his recent buzz.

    You have to notice Fred Wilson is an investor in both Twitter and FourSquare. That guy can sure see trends. He spots.

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